Theology of same sex love

Ekklesia reports that Savitri Hensman has written Journey towards acceptance: theologians and same sex love, an overview of theological discussion and debate from the last 60 years.


There are too many Christians today – both for and against full inclusion of partnered LGBT people – who have little awareness of the debates that have taken place in theological circles over the past sixty years, and the process by which so many theologians today have come to support greater inclusion. Some seem to believe that calls for acceptance in the church are based on embracing society’s values (at least in parts of the world where same-sex relationships are by and large accepted) and ignoring those aspects of the Bible and church tradition that do not fit. This is regarded as a mark of either faithlessness or progress, depending on people’s own views on the subject.

However this does not in any way do justice to the considered work of most theologians who have argued the case for greater inclusion, drawing deeply on the witness of the Bible and the church through the ages, to discern how God has been and is at work in a complex and constantly changing world. Moreover it makes it harder to find common ground to enable fellowship and dialogue among those with different views, and promote mutual understanding even if disagreement persists.

In this paper, Savitri Hensman gives a detailed overview of some of the most significant affirmative theological work on same-sex love and the Christian tradition. She demonstrates the unhelpful and simplistic positing of a straightforward 'conservative versus liberal' divide on these issues, and draws on Catholic, Anglican, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Methodist, Reformed, Quaker and Anabaptist/Mennonite thinkers.

No more saying "you haven't done your theology"!!

Full document here (pdf)

Comments (4)

Amen, Amen, AMEN!! You can disagree with the theology we've done all you want but canNOT say we haven't done it!

Can anyone provide me with access to the questions used to generate these conclusions?

Alvah Whealton

Alvah Whealton, I am not sure that I understand your question. The theologians mentioned were addressing a variety of questions in their work, and writing in varying contexts; I hope this reflected in the piece. If I have misunderstood, please could you be more specific?

Savi Hensman, You have done an excellent job summing up the work which has been done on this topic. No, Susan, nobody can say that the work has not been done. It has!

Gary Paul Gilbert

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